Monday, May 29, 2017
Seasons of the Heart/Donna Mann
My earliest memory of knowing God’s love was nurtured in a small rural Sunday school. The first time I remember expressing it was when I made angels in the snow, looking up at a bright blue sky and feeling apart of it because God loved me. I probably had a song in my heart, “Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so.”
Some colleagues have talked about how they first understood God in their teenage years after coming home from their first youth retreat or summer camp. As a farm girl, I didn’t have the opportunity to have either of those experiences, but I remember my first Sunday school teacher’s event at Five Oaks Christian Training Center. It was like fresh water on a hot day: refreshing, stimulating and inspiring. And a deeper meaning of God stirred in my spirit from the weekend.
I’ve sat in conversations with people who referred to their early years and confessed that they understand God’s love differently today. I can identify with that. I think God’s love has remained constant from the times I took the cows to the back fifty after they were milked; through three academic degrees, family deaths and touching the new born grandbaby’s hand. That love has grown and is constant, refreshing, nurturing and comforting. It is like a warm blanket regardless of the situation I’m facing. And it is different than those early days.
I remember people saying, “When you go to seminary, your theological interpretation and definitions will be examined and severed.” Examined, but not severed! Seminary was a wonderful time in my life when my eyes were opened to interpretations that I’d never considered. In the late 70s, I was the only woman in some of my classes and that didn't take away from my desire to study. God’s love for me grew and became even more of everything it was previously, which gave me confidence to dig in and to do.
When I read some of the early sermons I wrote, I am always glad to feel that I could write it better now. I’d definately write with a different theological understanding of the scripture text which slightly nudges me into another season of the heart.
Another season of the heart!
“When I was an infant at my mother’s breast, I gurgled and cooed like any infant. When I grew up, I left those infant ways for good (1 Corinthians 13:11) The Message (MSG)
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